Music Monday – Ihsahn, “Tacit”

Can’t say I’ve been an avid follower of the former Emperor frontman, but I’ve really enjoyed the twisted experimentation of Ihsahn’s recent forays into progressive metal. It’s very organic, but not pleasantly so – which is what I like about it. It’s really harsh, almost offensive, but precisely that harshness creates the contrast which allows the intermittent beauty to make a special impact.

This song is from his most recent album, Das Seelenbrechen (a Nietzschean term, by the way), which was released in October last year.

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Music Tuesday – Carpark North feat. Stine Bramsen, “32”

I’ve been a fan of Carpark’s since my best friend and I poured over every single musical detail on their debut album back in 2003. Those were some good car rides.

“32” is the first single off their new and long-awaited album, Phoenix, which came out yesterday. I heard the song live last summer and, along with the album, it’s vintage Carpark: Electronically fused very melodic and very dynamic stadium rock. I love the angularity of the opening riff and, of course, the sing-along chorus. The vocals, especially Stine Bramsen’s, are a compelling organic counterpoint to the distorted electronics. Really good.

If you get the album, which you should, check out “Phoenix”, the title track, especially. I’ve been obsessed with that riff ever since I heard the song for the first time a couple of weeks ago. And the positive lyrics have really spoken into my life with some of stuff I’m going through at the moment.

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Music Monday – Mandroid Echostar, “The Sleeper”

From their EP Citadels, which can be bought here. I love the interplay between the prog and the rock-out. The guitar-work, especially, stands out. I love the bluesy solo and I love the groove it’s played over. Mandroid Echostar sound what Protest the Hero, featuring the singer (and his hair) from Coheed and Cambria, would sound like on a mild tranquilliser.

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Metal Song For This Friday Night: Russian Circles – “Deficit”

Anyone into instrumental post-metal will know and, most likely, love Russian Circles. The dynamic clash between introspection and transcendence that they have perfected is mesmerising – especially, I gather, live. Awesome, awesome band. And if “Deficit” is any indication, they seem to be going in an even heavier direction with their new album, Memorial, which is great. The album comes out the 29th of October and can be preordered here.

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